Triclinic fluid order

  • Chattham N
  • Korblova E
  • Shao R
 et al. 
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Among the condensed phases, those of lowest point group symmetry are the triclinic crystals, which have only the identity element or the identity and inversion elements. Such low symmetry is stabilized by the specificity of molecular interaction, which is weakened with increasing disorder, so that known phases with fluid degrees of freedom are more symmetric. Here we report triclinic order, appearing as a broken symmetry in a single, isolated, fluid smectic liquid crystal layer freely suspended in air, showing that none of its principal dielectric axes lies either normal or parallel to the layer plane.

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  • Nattaporn Chattham

  • Eva Korblova

  • Renfan Shao

  • David M. Walba

  • Joseph E. MacLennan

  • Noel A. Clark

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